One of the greatest Hindu festivals is called Navratri. It is the celebration of Good over Evil; of the greatness and valour of Devi Durga; the Giver of Peace, Prosperity and Well being of the mortals. The word Navratri literally means nine nights in Sanskrit (Nav = nine and Ratri = nights). It is celebrated during the period of Sarad Masi Aswin determined by the Hindu lunar calendar.
Below are some fun crafts you can make to celebrate Navratri. If you know anyone who honors the Navratri festival, you can give them one of these crafts as a gift!
Navratri Craft Idea – Mitti ka diya
A mitti ka diya is a clay prayer lamp. To make this lamp, you will need some air drying clay, vegetable oil or corn oil, and a wick. You can get the air drying clay and the wick at any craft store. If you want to decorate the lamp, you will also need craft paints.
Mold the clay into a small oval shaped bowl. Then form a lip on one side by pressing down on the clay with a rounded object like a skewer or pencil. Let the lamp air dry until it is hard.
When the lamp is dry, you can paint it if desired. Use festive colors like red, gold, orange, blue and bright green. Then let the paint dry.
Put the wick in the center of the lamp. Cut it so it’s sticking up about 1/2 inch above the lamp. Fill the lamp with oil and light the wick. The mitti ka diya lamp is traditionally place in front of a Hindu God or Goddess.
Navratri Craft Idea – Festive Firecracker
A firecracker is a popular noisemaker that is lit during the Navratri Festival. You can make a fake firecracker to honor the celebration. This is a good craft for kids.
To make a festive firecracker, you will need an empty toiler paper roll, red construction paper, and a piece of yarn or cord for a wick.
Cover the toilet paper roll with red construction paper. Then cut two circles larger than the diameter of the toilet paper roll. Poke a hole in one circle.
Cut a piece of yarn or cord about 5 inches long. Stick the yarn in the hole and pull it through just about an inch. Tape the inch long tail to the construction paper to secure it.
Glue the circle of paper to one end of the toilet paper roll, leaving the long end of the wick on the outside. Fold over the parts of the circle that are sticking out and glue the edges to the toilet paper roll. Attach the other circle of paper to the other end, but with no wick. Decorate the firecracker as desired.
For more Hindu crafts, please see this article: Crafts to Celebrate Dussehra